WestJet acquired by private equity firm as part of a £2.9bn deal

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Canadian airline WestJet Airlines has been acquired by private equity firm Onex as part of an all cash deal worth C$5 billion (£2.9 billion).

Under the terms of the agreement, Onex and its affiliated funds will acquire all outstanding shares of WestJet for C$31.00 per share, after which WestJet will operate as a privately-held company.

WestJet is Canada’s second biggest airline and also includes low-cost carrier Swoop. It has grown its route network over the last few years and operates an-all Boeing fleet and recently introduced Boeing 787 Dreamliners to routes in February.

Onex managing director, Tawfiq Popatia said: “WestJet is one of Canada’s strongest brands and we have tremendous respect for the business that Clive Beddoe and all WestJetters have built over the years.

“WestJet is renowned internationally for its unparalleled guest experience and employee culture. We’re thrilled to be partnering with WestJetters and continuing this remarkable Canadian success story.”

WestJet’s president and chief executive officer, Ed Sims added: “We are delighted to continue the journey of building an airline based on a growing network, providing competitive airfares and more choice to, from and within Canada, for communities large and small.”